Magnet school parent information nights

Parents interested in District 191’s magnet school options can attend upcoming information nights at four elementary and junior high schools.

Magnet schools provide students with specific academic programs, such as STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), AVID or gifted-and-talented offerings.

The information nights will be held at 6 p.m. on Tuesday at Rahn Elementary School of Arts and Technology, at 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 13 at Harriet Bishop Gifted and Talented Elementary, at 7 p.m. on Jan. 23 at Nicollet Junior High (offering the AVID college readiness program), and at 6 p.m. on Jan. 27 at Metcalf Junior High (offering the STEM Magnet Program).

For more information about magnet schools, visit www.isd191.org.

Rahn Elementary chess team wins title

About 60 elementary students competed in the 30th annual districtwide chess tournament on Dec. 14 at Metcalf Junior High, and Rahn School of Arts and Technology earned its first district championship title.

In second place was Harriet Bishop Elementary. The school has the district’s largest chess team, with 78 students, and was the defending champion. Third place went to William Byrne Elementary.

Six students were named grade-level winners, and 10 other individuals won awards as well.

District 191 has a chess team at each of its elementary schools, and all fourth-graders have a chance to learn about chess during the school day through a residency program that brings a chess master to the district.


Principal to retire at end of year

Kim Swift, who has served as Shakopee High School’s principal for three years, recently announced that she will retire at the end of the 2013-14 school year.

Swift spent three decades serving in various roles in Dubuque, Iowa, before coming to Shakopee. She began as a teacher and later became a guidance counselor. After that, she was principal at the district’s alternative high school.


District to hold community forums

The Farmington district has set the dates for two community forums this winter in order to discuss its emerging plans for a new school with parents and community members.

The forums are scheduled from 5 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday at the Little Theatre at Boeckman Middle School, 800 Denmark Av. in Farmington, and from 5 to 6 p.m. on Jan. 9 in the Multipurpose Room at Riverview Elementary, 4100 W. 208th St., Farmington.

Expected to open next fall, the new K-8 school will be focused on individualized learning, letting students learn at their own pace. The school will initially enroll about 100 students and will be housed at the District Instructional Service Center. It is open to all district residents equally.

Upon school board approval, additional parent meetings will likely be held in February and March, at which point parents could enroll students.


Wynes to remain interim president

Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system Chancellor Steven Rosenstone has announced that Tim Wynes’ appointment as interim president of Dakota County Technical College (DCTC) will extend through the 2014-15 academic year.

Rosenstone said he will begin a national search for a new president next fall, in hopes of choosing a new leader by April 2015.

Wynes began his interim presidency on July 1, 2013.

There have been other recent leadership changes at DCTC. In November, DCTC Vice President Kelly Murtaugh was named vice president of academic affairs at St. Paul College, with Mike Opp, most recently the dean of transportation and industry, appointed to fill her role on an interim basis. In turn, Chad Sheets will take over Opps’ role, also on an interim basis.